Resources and Tools

  • Catalog of Tools

    Catalog of Instructional Tools to Help Schools and School Districts Implement College- and Career Readiness Standards 

    The Council of the Great City Schools has developed the following tools to help its urban school systems and others implement college- and career-readiness standards. (August 2017)                                                                                                                                                                                               

  • Supporting Excellence

    Supporting Excellence: A Framework for Developing, Implementing, and Sustaining a High-Quality District Curriculum

    A framework that provides instructional leaders and staff with a core set of criteria for what a high-quality curriculum entails. This guide includes annotated samples and exemplars from districts around the country. It also provides actionable recommendations for developing, implementing, and continuously improving upon a district curriculum, ensuring that it reflects shared instructional beliefs and common, high expectations for all students. (July 2017)

  • Indicators of Success

    Indicators of Success: A Guide for Assessing District Level Implementation of College and Career-Readiness Standards

    A set of indicators districts might use to track their progress on implementation of college- and career-readiness standards. (Spring 2016)

  • Calendar of Questions
    Calendar of Questions, 2014-2014
    A Common Core State Standards Implementation Tool for School Board Members, Superintendents, District Staff, Principals, Teachers, Counselors, Parents, and Students (September 2013)

  • Professional Learning Platform


    Great City Schools, Professional Learning Platform

    Inaugural Courses: Complex Thinking and Communicaiton Across Content Areas

    A program of courses for teachers serving high-needs students to ensure they meet college- and career-readiness standards by engaging in complex forms of communication and thinking. (2017)

  • Parent Roadmap   Parent Roadmap

    Grade-Level Instructional Materials Evaulation Tool-Quality Review (GIMET-QR)

    Textbooks and their digital counterparts are not only vital classroom tools but also a major expense, and it is worth taking time to find the best quality materials for students and teachers. While there is no perfect set of materials or textbooks, this Grade-Level Instructional Materials Evaluation Tool-Quality Review (GIMET-QR) is designed for use by professionals as a framework for evaluating the quality of instructional materials and choosing materials that are best suited to provide a coherent learning experience for students.

    ELA/Literacy Grade-Level Instructional Materials Evaluation Tool

    Mathematics Grade-Level Instructional Materials Evaluation Tool

  • Beyond Test Scores
    Beyond Test Scores: What NAEP Results Tell Us About Implementing the Common Core in Our Classrooms
    In this report, the Council analyzes student performance on 2013 released NAEP items that reflect the content and rigor of the common core standards, explores how and where classroom instruction may have fallen short of preparing students to succeed at such tasks, and discusses what changes to curriculum and instruction might help districts advance student achievement. (July 2013) 

  • Re-envisioning English Language Arts and English Language Development for English Language Learners

    Re-envisioning English Language Arts and English Language Development for English Language Learners
    Read the Council’s new criteria for determining whether English language arts materials are compatible with college and career standards and appropriate for English language learners. (May 2017)